Vanity Fair’s August Recreates The 30s Films With Young Actors

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I sometimes think I’m more of a fashion cinephile. Not the kind who loves movies about/around/with fashion but fashion like a movie. Take for instance photography: fashion photography revolutionizes my aesthetics only if the pictures tell a story. A good one.

That’s why I love (anything-) Annie Leibovitz. She’s like a photo-story teller to me. I could never resist the story of Annie lenses.

So Vanity Fair’s pictorials really get to me. Because they tell stories. Like this “Ain’t We Got Style” from Vanity Fair August 2009 where young artist impersonate legends from the thirties films! (the story continues right after the jump with more pictures and videos!)

Vanity Fair August It Happened one night

Photographed by Art Streiber, Mark Selinger, Michael Roberts and Norman Jean Roy, the August portfolio looks magical and doesn’t fail to impress me. The work that’s being put into a photo session like that is unbelievable: an entire industry for just few pages of printed paper in a monthly magazine…

Vanity Fair August Thirties movies My Man Godfrey

James Marsden and Rose Byrne channeling Clark Gable and Claudette Colbert (It Happened One Night, Frank Capra, 1934), Mila Kunis as Joan Crawford (Letty Lynton, 1932), Channing Tatum and Amanda Seyfried as William Powell and Carole Lombard (My Man Godfrey, 1936), Josh Duhamel and Elle Fannig as Ryan and Tatul O’Neal (Paper Moon, 1973), Kat Dennings, Anton Yelchin, Maya Rudolph, John Krasinski, Elizabeth Banks, Hugh Dancy (They Shoot Horses Don’t They? 1969) and so many more play the tune of the Great Depression for an artistic comparison with the current “depression”.

Vanity Fair August Thirties Duhamel Fanning

Would that add some seriousness to the playful spirit in which the photos were supposed to be taken? Maybe. Then again, maybe not. It’s not uncommon for upcoming actors to act as past legends. It’s something reassuring in recreating a stated success, something that gives one aspirant a clear perspective of the peak. Is it safe to recreate the Great Depression? Don’t really know, but I surely can’t take it seriously if there’s John Krasinski in it! There’s gotta be a prank somewhere… (via 1, 2)

Vanity Fair August Thirties movies Krasinski

Vanity Fair August Thirties movies Mamie Gummer

Vanity Fair August Thirties movies Mila Kunis

Vanity Fair August Thirties movies

Vanity Fair August Thirties movies photos Vanity Fair August Thirties movies behind the scenes Vanity Fair August Thirties movies selinger

Vanity Fair August Thirties movies Lety Vanity Fair August Thirties movies shooting


#1 Ellington on 07.09.09 at 9:09 am

As always Annie Leobovitz’s photos are magical. I think that James Marsden is doing a stellar Clark Gable. But there is something about Channing Tatum he is so GRRR to me and makes me forget myself. ;)

#2 Daydreamer on 07.10.09 at 12:39 pm


#3 Adriana on 07.11.09 at 5:10 am

Yes, they have style!

Safe to recreate the Great Depression? Hmm, maybe we can learn from it and how to survive in style?

I’ve no clue why John Krapinski can’t be taken serious? I can’t remember him for “Jarhead”? Great movie!
I like “Clark Gable” the best.

#4 kate on 07.13.09 at 11:51 pm

Rose Bryne is a great understated actress.

#5 Mitzie on 07.15.09 at 6:50 am

It just seems to me that none of these actors have the presence nor the personality nor the weight to carry off the people they are representing. I mean Amanda Seyfried portraying Carole Lombard? Puh-leeze! Or Mila Kunis for Joan Crawford – no way! I like James Marsden but that Clark Gable look is awful on him! I really don’t care to see Channing Tatum portraying William Powell.

This was the reason I did not buy this issue. Because I strongly disagreed with their choice of actors. None of them has any weight or substance to pull this off.

#6 Mock-off on 08.03.09 at 12:31 pm

So creative. The photos are amazing to look at.

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